Therefore it comes down to this. The final race of this lengthy NASCAR season. After 35 points paying races, the last 4 drivers who will race for the championship Sunday happen to be decided.
Considering that the removal format to decide a winner was introduced two years back the winner has also won the race. Odds are then that the winner of this race Sunday will also wear the Cup crown. Others can win, but three of those last five race winners dating back to Tony Stewart in 2011, have also won the title, so don’t be shocked if the motorist celebrating a race triumph in victory lane Sunday, can also be celebrating his championship.
Here’s how it shakes out one of the four finalists for Sunday’s 36th race of this year for your betting or fantasy racing leagues. Driver Ratings are compiled from 2005-2016 races (23 total) among active drivers at Phoenix. The Driver Rating is a number based on a formula developed by NASCAR which unites”loop data” elements like average running position, average speed under green, variety of workouts, and other stats. There is a maximum of 150 points a driver can earn for every race. The odds are present as of Wednesday.
1. Carl Edwards (7-1). Edwards has two wins here and the highest driver rating one of the 4, 109.4. The only driver among the Championship 4 with a number of wins at Homestead, Edwards still has memories of losing the race, and the name, to Tony Stewart in 2011. Section of the Joe Gibbs Racing team, Edwards will be looking for salvation Sunday, and he might just get it.
2. Jimmie Johnson (7-2). Homestead is one of the very few tracks in NASCAR which Johnson has never won at. He runs well here though and has the second highest driver rating of this 4, 96.7. Johnson will want to make history Sunday with a title. When he brings his”A” game and may avoid some of the miscues that the group has endured this season occasionally, Johnson could just pull it off.
3. Kyle Busch (5-1). Busch is seeking to defend his title, earned by a win at Homestead this past year. He’s got the third highest driver evaluation, 95.5. But he hardly left the Championship 4, and has struggled sometimes. However, with one final race and an opportunity to bring another name, and Joe Gibbs Racing behind him, Busch could be in position to add another win, and yet another title.
4. Joey Logano (7-1). Logano is possibly the underdog among the Championship 4. He has never won at Homestead, has the lowest driver evaluation one of the area, 83.5. However, Logano finished fourth here last year and led the 2nd most laps in the race, 72. Logano was surprising at times this season and he could surely be a surprise Sunday by winning his first Cup title.
OTHERS: There will be a total of 36 other motorists seeking to win Sunday. Chief among them, Matt Kenseth (12-1). Kenseth has the 2nd greatest driver rating among the field, 108.4, also acquired here in 2007. Coming off a disappointing finish at Phoenix last week, Kenseth will be looking to make a strong statement. Kevin Harvick (6-1) was also disappointed last week since he failed to make the cut for the first time because the removal format started. He also won the race, and the name in 2014, has the fifth greatest driver evaluation, 104.3, and could add another win to his Homestead resume Sunday.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Ford EcoBoost 400 in Homestead-Miami Speedway will be run on Sunday, November 20. Live coverage is going to be on NBC starting at 2:00 p.m. ET with all the green flag coming only after 2:30 p.m. ET.
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